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The Growing Concern of Elder Abuse

As the population ages, more people place their loved ones in the care of a nursing home facility. The staff should treat residents with the care and love they deserve, but tragically, that isn’t always the case.

Nursing home abuse is rife in the modern day, both in Illinois and beyond. If you have elderly relatives you care for and need to entrust to a nursing home, you should understand potential issues.

If your loved one shows signs of abuse, reach out to a Granite City nursing home abuse lawyer. We at Albers Injury Law are ready to stand by your side as you fight for the dignity of your loved one.

What Is Nursing Home Abuse?

When a caretaker harms a resident in a care facility, this automatically falls under the umbrella of nursing home abuse. Both accidental and intentional harmful actions may constitute a label of abuse.

Unfortunately, residents who suffer through abuse may experience mental trauma and emotional or behavioral turmoil that is difficult to work through. Some forms of abuse may even result in medical emergencies or death.

A nursing home abuse lawyer is valuable when handling these cases, regardless of the perceived severity of the situation. You want every possible ally when facing a nursing home and their legal team.

Types of Nursing Home Abuse in Granite City

As with any abuse, nursing home abuse takes many forms, including:

  • Physical
  • Mental
  • Emotional
  • Sexual
  • Financial

Physical injuries can include bruises, cuts, bedsores, or fractured or broken bones. Mental and emotional abuse doesn’t always involve physical harm but can severely reduce a resident’s quality of life and affect their mental wellness and personality. Financial abuse can leave residents unable to pay for their own care.

Neglect is also a significant form of abuse, with some residents not receiving life-saving medicine or food and water on time.

In some cases, nursing homes know about these issues and staff refuses to report it. In others, no one is aware that a staff member behaves abusively behind closed doors.
An Illinois nursing home abuse lawyer can help you determine whether you have a case on your hands by thoroughly examining the facts and evidence of your case.

Identifying Signs of Neglect and Abuse

Signs of abuse will differ depending on the type of abuse your loved one suffers. For more physical forms of abuse or neglect, you may notice the following:

  • Unusual bruising
  • Scratches
  • Unexplained serious injuries, such as head trauma or broken bones
  • Loss of weight
  • Hair loss
  • Bed sores

Not every victim will show physical signs of abuse, but you may see mental or emotional signs that include:

  • Sudden withdrawal from social activities
  • Increased agitation or irritation
  • Self-soothing behavior
  • Heightened anxiety

Sudden personality changes or dips in mental health may point to abuse in the nursing home. It’s particularly suspicious when paired with a sudden increase in injuries.

While some of these signs are glaring, others may be more subtle and hard to recognize. A Granite City nursing home abuse lawyer from Albers Injury Law can help you identify and document these abuse signs.

Granite City Nursing Home Abuse Statistics

Unfortunately, statistics paint a grim picture. The National Library of Medicine shows that nursing home abuse rose by 83 percent in recent years. Women are more likely to suffer from abuse than men, and non-physical forms of abuse are the most common.

Other statistics include:

  • Around 85 percent of all nursing homes nationwide have reported abuse
  • Two-thirds of staff nationwide have admitted to abusing residents in some way
  • Many cases go unreported because residents face retaliation or don’t know how to report
  • 78 percent of Illinois nursing homes aren’t staffed adequately

This is what a “nursing home abuse epidemic” looks like, with chances of encountering an abusive situation being higher than most people would expect.

Having a Granite City nursing home abuse lawyer working on your case can ease some of your concerns. While pursuing damages doesn’t negate the suffering your loved one went through, it can help them reclaim power and their life.

Addressing the Epidemic of Nursing Facility Abuse in Illinois

Recognizing and responding to abuse in Granite City nursing homes is a big step toward solving the epidemic. There are two primary ways you can personally take part in fighting this sweeping problem.

Preventing nursing home abuse

Tragically, nursing home abuse cases are often underreported or never identified in the first place. You can impact that by:

  • Regularly checking in with your loved one
  • Knowing the signs of abuse to look for
  • Taking preventative measures, such as moving your loved one to another home
  • Calling out a nursing home for abusive behavior
  • Taking legal action can help penalize the nursing home while giving your loved one the compensation they deserve.
  • Reporting nursing home abuse

In situations of obvious abuse or life-threatening injury, contact the police immediately. If signs of abuse are more subtle and you aren’t sure whether your loved one’s injuries stem from abuse, you can contact your state’s branch of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program, which will check on the nursing home residents to determine if abuse is occurring.

Reporting a nursing home could result in the facility paying fines or facing other repercussions for abusive behaviors. In extreme cases, the government may shut down the facility.
If you feel suing for damages is warranted, a Granite City nursing home abuse lawyer from Albers Injury Law can help.

Talk With Our Granite City Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers

Abuse casts a heavy shadow over every part of your loved one’s life. Though nursing home abuse stems from many issues, such as understaffing, there is never a reason for it to happen. Keep an eye out for signs of abuse and take quick action if you believe your loved one has suffered at the hands of the staff meant to care for them.

Healing can take a long time and great effort. Our Granite City nursing home abuse lawyers at Albers Injury Law will walk you through the process of collecting evidence and testimony, help you file reports, and work to collect the compensation that your loved one rightfully deserves.

Reach out to Albers Injury Law to start seeking justice today.


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